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Expressive and Receptive Language

The terms expressive language and receptive language provide metaphors for discussing the duality of language usage, the former referring to the production aspect of language and the latter the comprehension aspect of language. It is important to understand that these terms were created as metaphors to ease discussion of encoding and decoding of language modalities and do not exist separately in language users. The use of these metaphors as real and different parts of language contributes to the fragmentation fallacy in the Speech–Language pathology (SLP) field. This entry provides an overview of expressive and receptive language, as well as clinical implications for the atomistic approach to language.

The theories espoused by Leonard Bloomfield in his 1933 Language isolates the acts of producing and receiving linguistic ...

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